Saturday’s $600,000 Alabama (G1) at Saratoga features a rematch between Maracuja and Malathaat but perhaps Crazy Beautiful can roll by and turn the tide with a minor upset.
The Ken McPeek trainee has finished behind the even money favorite Malathaat twice in her last three starts but is coming in off a pair of sharp wins after a poor showing in the Kentucky Oaks (G1) where she checked in a well beaten 10th.
The filly won the Summertime Oaks (G2) and the Delaware Oaks (G3) in her last two starts.
“She got hammered leaving the gate and nothing really went right,” McPeek said of her Oaks outing. “She never got in a rhythm and really had no chance. We look at it as a throw-out.”
“If she runs back to her last couple of races, I think she’s definitely in the picture,” McPeek added. “She’s a lovely filly to be around and we’re cautiously optimistic.”
Malathaat was the big favorite in the Coaching Club American Oaks (G1) last out in a four horse field. The Todd Pletcher trainee went into the race perfect in five starts but got run down in deep stretch by 14-1 longshot Maracuja, the two separated by a head.
“I’m hoping that we get on the outside and stay clear. Those other two fillies [Maracuja and Clairiere] just kept tag teaming her and she never had a chance to take a breath,” said Shadwell Stables’ General Manager Rick Nichols. “I think the additional distance will be a benefit to her as well. Her pedigree certainly points towards that direction.”
Coaching Club American Oaks Replay
The filly seems likely to sit off the pace like she did in her wins in the Ashland (G1) at Keeneland and the Kentucky Oaks (G1) at Churchill Downs, races she won by a head and a neck.
Maracuja (7-2) was beaten 7 ½ lengths in the Kentucky Oaks and bounced back with a career best effort pulling off the upset in the CCA Oaks for trainer Rob Atras.
Clairiere (6-1) is looking to improve off her third-place finish in the CCA Oaks where she was beaten 5 3/4 lengths. Irad Ortiz Jr. has the return call.
Completing the field are Will’s Secret (15-1), Played Hard (15-1), and Army Wife (6-1).
Let’s head out to Saratoga for Saturday’s featured race of the day:
Saratoga Race 10 The Alabama G1 6:13 ET
1 Crazy Beautiful 6-1
6 Malathaat 1-1
3 Clairiere 6-1
4 Maracuja 7-2
This filly is coming off a career top winning the Delaware Oaks (G3) last out at Delaware Park. She tracked the early pace and drew off to win by six lengths The third-place finisher Leader of the Band came back to win the Monmouth Oaks (G3) on July 31. This gal showed some ability as a juvenile, running second in the Pocahontas (G3) and Alcibiades (G1) then was sixth in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1). She had a rough start in the Kentucky Oaks (G1) and ended up very wide in a 10th place finish. She has come out of that race in good form, bouncing back with a win in the Summer Oaks (G2) at Anita before her win in the Delaware Oaks. The runner up Soothsay won the Indiana Oaks (G3) in her next outing. She looks as if she is going to be able to handle 1 ¼ miles and comes into this race in great form for McPeek who won this race last year with Swiss Skydiver and in 2018 with Eskimo Kisses. We should catch a fair price on this filly.
The Pletcher trainee suffered her first career loss last out when Maracuja ran her down late in the CCA Oaks (G1) going 1 1/8 miles. She won the Kentucky Oaks (G1) and the Ashland (G1) in her two previous outings coming from off the pace. There was just no pace signed up in the four horse field in the CCA Oaks and Johnny V. thought it was best just to go to the lead She was pressured a couple times of times and it took just enough out of her to get her beat. She owns a solid pace profile throughout and likely takes a tracking role here. She is going to turn the tables on Maracuja and the most likely to win but at even money we will try to beat her for the top spot. She is by Curlin out of the multiple stakes winner Dreaming of Julia ($874,500) and the extra ground should suit her.
This gal chased the early pace and was no match for the top pair in the stretch in a third-place finish in the CCA Oaks, beaten 5 ¾ lengths. She has now lost four in row since winning the Rachel Alexandra (G2) back in February at Fair Grounds in her first start of the year. She has finished behind Malathaat twice but may be able to cut into that margin at today’s distance. She is by Curlin out of the multiple Grade 1 winner Cavorting ($2.06 million) who won the 2016 Personal Ensign (G1) here at 1 1/8 miles. She likely is going to appreciate the extra ground.
WIN: Crazy Beautiful to win at 9-2 or better.
EXACTA: 1 / 3,4,6 and 1,6 / 1,3,6